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When did you know you had a talent for interior/design?

I don’t think there was ever an “aha” moment. When I was little I rearranged the furniture in my room frequently and loved putting thought into what should go where and why. I ended up getting my bachelors degree in graphic design instead of interior design because my sister went to school for interior design and I didn’t want to copy her (genius reasoning by my 18 year old self). Having the formal training in design definitely laid a good foundation and influences all the work I do. At one point I worked at a furniture design showroom and was able to do space planning for customers and in store merchandising which I loved. Once I started the blog and was unconsciously posting mostly interior related content I realized that was where my true passion was and as a result that was where I put most of my efforts. And finally, after seeing how well the cabin we renovated and our kitchen I designed was received, I knew I was onto something.

What inspired you to be creative growing up?

Both of my parents had creative hobbies and I was surrounded by it from the beginning. My dad is a computer network engineer but is a very skilled craftsman and woodworker as well. He was always in his shop making something in his free time and my mother was always into something creative… painting, ceramics, and now quilting. I also could never get enough of the art classes throughout school and had one teacher in particular that happened to move from elementary school to teaching at the junior high to high school at the same times as I moved up, so she had a big influence. She always had constructive criticism and was encouraging but still pushed me to better myself. (Thanks mrs. Krug)

You mentioned your pregnancy was a surprise, what was it like finding out?

Yes! I had started to suspect while we were on a flight back from England and although I didn’t tell my husband I was already thinking of all the fun special ways to tell him if I was pregnant. (I was never sure if I wanted to have kids or not and he was supportive of that but I knew he really wanted a child) Once we landed, the minute I got home I went to the bathroom to take the test and it was positive. I got such a rush of excitement my plans to package it up and make it an extra special moment went out the window and I just screamed his name instead and ran out showing him the stick. Once he figured out what was going on we both cried happy tears.

Are you more creative since having Archer?

I’m not sure how to quantify creativity but he has definitely opened a whole new world of it. Designing his nursery ended up being one of my favorite spaces.  I loved diving into the world of children’s clothes and toys and found searching out well designed pieces has been so fun.

Tell us about your business, and all the different sides to it?

Basically, you can break it down into three main avenues, the studio, the blog and the shop. Through the studio, I offer interior services, a lot of which are E-design, which allows me to work remotely as a lot of my clientele finds me through the blog and are located all over the country. I also still offer surface (print and pattern creation) and product design for other companies which was what I was doing full-time before starting my own business. Through the blog I do a lot of brand partnerships, content creation and that’s where I get to create and share things I am working on or what is inspiring me. And finally, the shop is where I sell the line of products I designed. 

What’s the best thing about running your own business? Worst thing?

The best thing is being able to do such a variety of creative projects. I wear a lot of hats, each day is different from the last, and I get to decide which projects to say yes to and which ones to pass on.
The worst thing is that I have to wear hats that I don’t always enjoy wearing, like accounting and paperwork hats.

If you could look back and tell yourself something 5 years ago, or one year ago, what would it be?

Let’s see, 5 years ago I’d probably tell myself to quit that job and start your own thing sooner.

What business lessons have you learned that you wish someone would have taught you sooner?

Delegate, delegate, delegate. I always knew it in my head, but I’m the kind of person that thinks oh it will take me longer to find someone/ask someone. Now, not delegating isn’t an option and it frees me up to do the things I love. If something isn’t in your wheelhouse or a isn’t a strength of yours find someone whose it is.
sarah sherman samuel gorgeous mother and baby

What’s been your biggest accomplishment personally + professionally?

Personally: Archer is our biggest accomplishment, having a baby is no small feat… it was the hardest and most empowering thing I’ve ever done. And he is pretty darn incredible if I do say so 😉
Professionally: taking the leap to start my own business!

What’s your favorite thing about blogging? Least favorite thing/uglier side of it that you don’t enjoy?

My favorite thing about blogging is being a part of the community and getting to give and receive inspiration to/from others. The flip side of that is when people take and use your work/ideas/images and try to pass them off as their own. I’m a big proponent of giving credit where credit is due, which unfortunately isn’t practiced by everyone.

How do you balance your time working/being a mama?

I wrote a whole post on this! http://sarahshermansamuel.com/real-talk-real-moms-working-childcare/
I don’t really have any free time right now, but there are quiet moments when caring for Archie and although I am never not working when I am not with A, it doesn’t always feel like work when you enjoy so much of it.  

How much sleep do you get a night/workouts per week?

I usually get around 7 hours of sleep, 8 if I am lucky and get to bed early. Working out is non existent at the moment other than walks to the park and following around A, who just recently never stops moving. I choose sleep over working out any and every day of the week. 

What are your favorite hidden gems for interiors/brands that you really admire?

I love the local stores Empiric Studio and Lawson Fenning and have always looked up to Kelly Wearstler and her brand. 
To learn more about Sarah, check out her gorgeous blog here and Instagram here.  Have any questions? Ask away!!
Photography by Ben Christensen
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